Thursday, July 29, 2010

How to Teach Your Children the Meaning of Charity

Parents all over the world want their children to have character. Honesty, integrity, thankfulness, and charity are important qualities to see them attain. You may not have problems teaching the other character traits, but you may wonder how to teach your children the meaning of charity.

The old saying is that it’s better to give than to receive. You want your child to be able to empathize with others who need help and to willingly give of their time and substance.

The following are some ideas you may want to use to teach your child the meaning of charity:

* Show the importance of charity by being charitable yourself. If you have clothing you no longer wear that is still in usable condition, take them to Goodwill, Salvation Army, or a women’s shelter. Tell your children that the items are to help others who are less fortunate. Whenever and whatever you do to help others, let your children know that it is an act of charity.

* Let them pick out some canned goods or other non-perishable food items that you can take to a local shelter or food bank. Explain to them how charity has good effects on the people that will receive the food. Maybe the recipients just lost their home to fire and have no food. By your giving these food items to the food bank, this family will have food to eat this week.

* Use your child’s interests to find charitable activities they can do. If your child loves animals, they may be able to help at a veterinarian’s office or a local animal shelter. They can also donate pet foods to the shelters and humane societies in your area. Those involved in sports may be able to walk or run in charitable events to help earn money for a particular cause. They may even decide to help with Special Olympics events.

* Point out that many sports personalities, actors, actresses, and other well-known people give to charities or start charitable organizations to help others. If they’re not sure, go together to the internet and look up Bill Gates, Tiger Woods, Paul Newman, Chuck Norris, or anyone else they may be a fan of.

* When very small children receive a new toy, you can ask them to give away an old toy to another child who doesn't have it. The toy needs to be in good condition rather than one that’s been torn up. You can keep a box in a specific location in your home to put items to be given to charity once the box is filled up. Not only will your child learn about charity, but you’ll also help clear some of the clutter from your home.

* Offer to go to a neighbor’s house to help them work in their garden. Take your children with you so they can help, as well. Your children can help rake leaves, mow the lawn, or shovel snow, depending upon the season.

* Baked goods are appreciated by those overseas in the military. Maybe once a month or every two months you and your children could bake several dozen cookies to send to our soldiers in foreign lands.

Every parent wants their child to think of others instead of being selfish. The above are some things you can do when trying to think of how to teach your children the meaning of charity. Begin working with them while they’re young and they’ll most likely be charitable for the rest of their lives.

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